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My blog entitled “Examining Islam Through Art,” is an attempt to engage with the themes of Islam creatively. The primary goal is to demystify Islam, acknowledge its universality and context, and highlight its beauty. Typically when we think of Islam from a Western, and more importantly, American point of view, we “otherize” and exoticize the […]

Fear of the Beard

This final post is in response to the last reading we did for the class– The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid.  The novel follows the story of Changez, a Pakistani man who works in NYC after graduating from Princeton.  It details his struggles as a Pakistani man in NYC following the attacks on 9/11, but also […]

Thinking about the Veil

This past week in class, we spoke about the practice of veiling in different cultures and the view of women in the Quran and Islamic Cultures.  The takeaway from these classes was that the veil, much like the view of women, varied by region.  The veil could be used as a device to restrict women’s […]

Birds and Islam

In class, we discussed the imagery of birds in Islam.  Birds are meant to be symbolic of God.  In fact, the flight of birds is seen as proof of God’s existence.  To explore this concept, this week, I created a drawing of a feather in blues and turquoise.  These are common colors used in islamic […]

Islamic Geometric Patterns

As discussed in class, art historians would classify islamic art used in mosques into three categories.  The first is calligraphic art, discussed in earlier posts.  The second is arabesque, which is a pattern that includes lines and foliage.  This pattern is also common in rugs.  Lastly, there is geometric art, which uses simple shapes to create […]

Peace and Islam

One common misconception about Islam, particularly in places like the US, is that it is a violent faith. On the first day of class we discussed this misconception and how many often conflate the actions of extremists to represent the entire religion. However, examining the actual religion, we see that Islam is a very peaceful […]

The Beautiful Names of Allah

In this image, I present the word Allah, meaning God, in Arabic script. This was inspired by the calligram assignment and also the calligraphy described in class. Text plays an integral part in many forms of Islamic art. The Qu’ran is revered by its followers for its use of language. The text itself is poetry. […]

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